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Drakenfeld (Drakenfeld 1) [Hardcover]

Mark Charan Newton
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
RRP: 16.99
Price: 13.59 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

10 Oct 2013 Drakenfeld 1

The monarchies of the Royal Vispasian Union have been bound together for two hundred years by laws maintained and enforced by the powerful Sun Chamber. As a result, nations have flourished but corruption, deprivation and murder will always find a way to thrive . . .

Receiving news of his father’s death Sun Chamber Officer Lucan Drakenfeld is recalled home to the ancient city of Tryum and rapidly embroiled in a mystifying case. The King’s sister has been found brutally murdered – her beaten and bloody body discovered in a locked temple. With rumours of dark spirits and political assassination, Drakenfeld has his work cut out for him trying to separate superstition from certainty. His determination to find the killer quickly makes him a target as the underworld gangs of Tryum focus on this new threat to their power.

Embarking on the biggest and most complex investigation of his career, Drakenfeld soon realises the evidence is leading him towards a motive that could ultimately bring darkness to the whole continent. The fate of the nations is in his hands.


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Tor; Main Market Ed. edition (10 Oct 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 023076682X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0230766822
  • Product Dimensions: 23.6 x 15.8 x 4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 330,164 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Mark Charan Newton was born in 1981, and holds a degree in Environmental Science. After working in bookselling, he moved into editorial positions at imprints covering science fiction and fantasy. He has written for a variety of non-fiction publications including The Ecologist and The Huffington Post, as well as science fiction for BBC Radio 4.

He currently lives and works in Nottingham. You can find him online at markcnewton.com or www.facebook.com/markcnewton

Product Description

Review

This is a grounded and realistic example of secondary world-building that works well as an intelligent locked-room mystery and also gives us a cerebral, multi-layered protagonist. Game Of Thrones fans will find plenty to enjoy in the story's sharply-played political skulduggery, and this first book in the series stands as an intriguing introduction to a world that's challenging and provocative without falling into Grimdark clichés (SFX)

A richly written, always engaging work, with well-developed characters and a nice mystery to get stuck into (SciFiNow)

Charan Newton's new novel Drakenfeld shares more with the historical fiction and detective fiction novels than it does with traditional epic fantasy, but there's just enough to his world that will make this feel just at home with most epic fantasy readers. The result is a deliberate, interesting novel that grows in scale from beginning to end (io9.com)

Drakenfeld is an interesting blend of Historical Fantasy and Crime Fiction, set in a beautifully imagined world that seems to have been inspired by Ancient Rome . . . a novel that became more and more interesting as the depths of its groundwork became clear (The Book Smugglers)

Not every story has to have its own completely unique and original world. Sometimes taking inspiration from a past era works out better than creating a new world, and Mark Charan Newton proves that he can do both (Fantasy Literature)

From the Back Cover

THEY'LL KILL TO HIDE THE TRUTH. HE'LL KILL TO FIND IT

The monarchies of the Royal Vispasian Union have been bound together for two hundred years by laws maintained and enforced by the powerful Sun Chamber. Nations have flourished as a result, but corruption, deprivation and murder will always find a way . . .

Following his father's death, Sun Chamber Officer Lucan Drakenfeld is recalled home to the ancient city of Tryum and rapidly embroiled in a mystifying case. The King's sister has been found brutally murdered - her beaten and bloody body discovered in a locked temple. With rumours of dark spirits and political assassination, Drakenfeld has his work cut out to separate superstition from certainty. His determination to find the killer quickly makes him a target, as the underworld gangs of Tryum focus on this new threat to their power.

Embarking on the biggest and most complex investigation of his career, Drakenfeld soon realizes the evidence is leading him towards a motive that could ultimately bring darkness to the whole continent. The fate of the nations is in his hands.

'Game of Thrones fans will find plenty to enjoy in the story's sharply played political skulduggery . . . an intriguing introduction to a world that's challenging and provocative without falling into Grimdark clichés'

SFX

'A smart, interesting thriller'

i09.com

@MarkCN

www.markcnewton.com

--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very enjoyable and intelligent crime-fantasy 10 Oct 2013
Format:Hardcover
Drakenfeld is a nice easy-going read - it's not the sort of book to grab you by the lapels and drag you on a fast-paced rollercoaster ride, it's more like the friendly arm around your shoulder, guiding you through the twists and turns of the narrative. I'm not by any means suggesting that Drakenfeld is slow-paced, I think it's about right, picking up speed at all the right times and sucking you in to the point that the pages turn quickly and easily.

I thought the main stumbling block for me here would be that Drakenfeld is written in the first person, which is definitely not my preference. This didn't spoil my enjoyment of the book in the slightest, and the style worked well here with the story we're following, allowing a natural access to the thought processes of our protagonist as he tries to solve an apparently impossible crime.

The crime itself is a classic murder mystery but it's the `who' and the `why' that provide more intrigue than the `how' we spend a fair amount of time puzzling over. When that little chestnut is cracked it's almost a little disappointing in its simplicity, but the other two aspects make up for it, and the cleverness of a second major death is the icing on the cake. There's plenty of room for making your own assumptions, but I did find it a little odd how one key player I suspected almost from the start was never even suggested as a potential suspect in Lucan Drakenfeld's investigation. Perhaps I missed something there, or perhaps it was just my suspicious mind trying to beat Drakenfeld to solving the murder.

The characters and the world they're in are as well fleshed out as the story they're a part of. We're shown the world when we need to see it, allowing it to grow and develop well as we become more deeply engrossed in the story.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Drakenfeld 6 Nov 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Mark Charan Newton brings us a new series with new characters in a new setting.

After receiving news of his father's death Sun Chamber Officer Lucan Drakenfeld is recalled home to the ancient city of Tryum and is rapidly embroiled in a mystifying case. The King's sister has been found brutally murdered - her beaten and bloody body discovered in a locked temple.

Lucan Drakenfeld is a very interesting character indeed; he's a cunning and determined investigator. The book is written in the first person, which sometimes works and sometimes doesn't. For me it worked and the more I read about Drakenfeld and his motivations the more I wanted to know about the world they inhabit. The order of Sun Chamber which Drakenfeld is a part of is very enigmatic, almost secret and whenever it's mentioned it instantly commands respect.

The setting of the book is a city called Tryum which takes its influences from Rome and Greece albeit in a very subtle way and not overtly obvious.

The lock room mystery was interesting, but gladly wasn't the entire focus of the book, just very cleverly put together in its simplicity once the solution is revealed. It certainly makes you think and question what you know as Drakenfeld's investigation unfolds. Drakenfeld has his work cut out for him trying to separate superstition from certainty.

As the plot steadily unfolds we learn more about Drakenfeld and the struggles he faces, in the shadow of his more famous father, even in death. Drakenfeld's determination to find the killer quickly makes him a target as the underworld gangs of Tryum focus on this new threat to their power. The secondary characters especially Leana and Senator Veron are well formed and the author gives them time to grow in the world they inhabit.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition
I've blown hot and cold with Mark Charan Newton's books over the last couple of years. Nights of Viljamur was fantastic and augured well for a new fantasy series but the follow up, City of Ruin, I found so bitterly disappointing that I largely ignored the next two in the series, although coming to them late - and probably with a less than open mind - I confess I enjoyed them a lot more. Anyway, when Drakenfeld turned up I did sniff at it a bit suspiciously not least because it smacked of historical fiction, something I struggle with at the best of times, but also because I wasn't sure which Newton had written it. Rest assured however that this is the immensely talented Newton that writes good books, and I was well pleased.

Set in a world very much influenced by Ancient Rome, the eponymous Drakenfeld is a rising star of the Sun Chamber, a law enforcement body whose jurisdiction covers the entire Vispasian Union and all monarchies and lands therein. Upon receiving news of the death of his father, Drakenfeld returns to his home city of Tryum to lay him to rest and put his affairs in order. It soon becomes apparent, however, that his father - himself a once prominent member of the Sun Chamber and a force to be reckoned with, let alone lived up to - was living a complex lie, and circumstances surrounding his death are not as straightforward as they at first seem. To add to this mystery, a member of the royal family is murdered during a big party and, as the only Sun Chamber official around, it falls to Drakenfeld to investigate the crime. With all eyes upon him and his own life seemingly at risk from all quarters, Drakenfeld's investigation lead him to the heart of power in Tryum where the truth could upset the delicate balance of the whole continent.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Smart and well-plotted
When a fantasy novel is announced as a murder mystery set in a secondary world inspired by Ancient Rome *BOOM* I'm done and sold on reading said novel, especially if it's written... Read more
Published 1 month ago by W.M.M. van der Salm-Pallada
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
A very interesting mix of crime novel and fantasy novel. very well written. I really enjoyed it and recommend it to anyone looking for a different style of fantasy.
Published 4 months ago by Zenock
3.0 out of 5 stars An excellent first half but weakened by a poor and implausible ending
The Royal Union has bound the nations of the Vispasian continent together for more than two centuries, with the ultranational police force known as the Sun Chamber being essential... Read more
Published 6 months ago by A. Whitehead
3.0 out of 5 stars Not great
I appreciate that there have been many great reviews of this book and I can see what people may like about it. Read more
Published 7 months ago by N. Offer
4.0 out of 5 stars Drakenfeld
This is the first book by this author that I have read. The author acknowledges, and it is evident, that much of the environment in which the book is set is influenced by that of... Read more
Published 8 months ago by Keen Reader
4.0 out of 5 stars A Change From the Usual
Drakenfeld is anything from your standard modern fantasy novel, no magic, not much bad language and only the merest breakout of violence. Read more
Published 8 months ago by MarcthePat
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Writer
Mark has always been one of those authors who likes to leave the readers with questions rather than deliver a story that is a simple affair from A to B. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Gareth Wilson - Falcata Times Blog
4.0 out of 5 stars The Wench is Dead
Drakenfeld is a book that wears its many influences with pride. It has a fantasy setting that is based heavily on Ancient Rome. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Quicksilver
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Read!
Drakenfeld is a superb novel. As soon as I started reading it I couldn't put it down. Well worth every penny!
Published 10 months ago by FrodoAllardice
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent fantasy/crime blend
Drakenfeld is just my sort of book, a blend of crime/fantasy with a flavour of the classical world. As with Mark Charan Newton's other books, the world building is very vivid and... Read more
Published 10 months ago by Amazon Customer
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